War of the Rebellion: Serial 026 Page 0187 Chapter XXX. ATTACK ON NEW BERNE, N. C.

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Numbers 5. Report of Colonel Josiah Pickett, Twenty-fifth Massachusetts Infantry, Second Brigade, of skirmishes at Deep Gully.


Camp Oliver, New Berne, N. C., March 15, 1863.

SIR: I have the honor to report that on the 13th instant, at 5.30 p.m., I started with six companies of my regiment for the outpost near Deep Gully, that place being attacked by the enemy and being held by the other four companies of my regiment with a part of the Third New York Cavalry. I arrived at the disputed ground soon after dark and learned that the enemy were in strong force in our front, with infantry, cavalry, and artillery, a distance of half a mile. By order of Colonel Lee, commanding the brigade, I divided my regiment, placing a wing on either side of the Trent road, throwing out a strong picket to guard against surprise, and remained on our arms until morning.

At daybreak I moved forward a company as skirmishers and they immediately engaged the enemy's line. General Palmer taking command, I was ordered forward with my regiment, supported by the Fifth and Forty-sixth Regiments Massachusetts Volunteers, with a section of Riggs's and one piece of Belger's batteries. Musketry firing was kept up for nearly three hours. The city being attacked in our rear, the regiments supporting me were withdrawn for its defense, and I was left, with my regiment and two pieces of artillery, to take care of the enemy as best I could. Having special orders from General Palmer not to expose the pieces, I blockaded the road and fell back to a better position at the Jackson House and awaited their advance. They soon began to shell the woods around and kept it up at intervals during the day, but did not advance. At 4 p.m. I sent out one company, under command of Captain Harrington, to observe the movements and position of the enemy if possible. He went as far as Deep Gully and found them falling back and exchanged shots with them at that place. I was relieved by the Forty-third Regiment Massachusetts Volunteer Militia at 6 p.m. on the 14th and returned to camp at New Berne with a loss of 1 man wounded and 1 missing.

Respectfully submitted.


Colonel Twenty-fifth Regiment Massachusetts Volunteers.


A. A. A. G. Second Brigadier, First Div., Eighteenth Army Corps.

Numbers 6. Report of Brigadier General Henry Prince, U. S. Army, commanding Fifth Division, of operations March 15-16.


New Berne, N. C., March 16, 1863.

COLONEL: Pursuant to orders, verbally communicated to me by the commanding general, my division moved out yesterday on the road south of the Trent River to feel the enemy, who had just then been reported from the front to have probably crossed in large force to that